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Last Updated: Tuesday, 20 June 2006, 11:10 GMT 12:10 UK
Legendary moor may lose its name
Ilkley moor
Bracken encroachment is a big threat to the moor
There are fears that Yorkshire's most well-known landmark - Ilkley Moor - could cease to be a moor altogether.

The 1,600-acre site, made famous by the Yorkshire anthem 'On Ilkley Moor Baht'at', is being overrun by bracken.

Conservationists are concerned it could end up failing to meet the technical definition of a moor and have to be renamed Ilkley Hill instead.

Bradford Council, which owns the moor, is considering ideas to help preserve the landscape for future generations.

Among suggestions being considered are forming a local management trust, setting up a Friends group and applying for EU farm subsidy cash with the help of English Nature.

Ilkley Moor is famous around the world for 'On Ilkley Moor Baht'at', a song which celebrates it and which is regarded as Yorkshire's unofficial anthem.

It is said to have been written by a church choir group on an outing from Halifax who sang the lyrics while enjoying an afternoon picnic.

The song tells the story of a young man courting the object of his affections, Mary Jane, on Ilkley Moor without a hat (Baht'at). He eventually freezes to death.

See what makes Ilkley Moor so special

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